skip navigation

PUBLICATIONS

Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.

 

NCJ Number: 62575 Find in a Library
Title: CREATING NEW CRIME, REFASHIONING OLD REMEDIES - AN OVERVIEW OF SCOTLAND'S COURTS
Journal: JUDGES' JOURNAL  Volume:17  Issue:4  Dated:(FALL 1978)  Pages:20-24,53
Author(s): J H MCCLUSKEY
Corporate Author: American Bar Association
United States of America
Date Published: 1978
Page Count: 6
Sponsoring Agency: American Bar Association
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THIS ARTICLE GIVES A DESCRIPTIVE OVERVIEW OF SCOTLAND'S COURTS AND CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM.
Abstract: THE SCOTTISH LEGAL SYSTEM, SEPARATE FROM BRITAIN'S, IS ECLECTIC, DEPENDING HEAVILY ON BORROWINGS FROM THE CIVIL LAW SYSTEM PREVAILING IN PRE-NAPOLEONIC CONTINENTAL EUROPE. THERE IS NO APPEAL FROM A SCOTTISH COURT TO LONDON IN CRIMINAL CASES, THUS GIVING SCOTLAND AUTONOMY IN CRIMINAL LAW. SCOTTISH JUDGES ARE FREE TO MODIFY THE LAW SO AS TO ADAPT IT TO NEW AND DEVELOPING SITUATIONS. MUCH OF THE CRIMINAL LAW IS IN THE COMMON LAW, ALLOWING FLEXIBILITY TO THE COURTS AND JUDGES AS INTERPRETERS OF THE LAW. SCOTLAND HAS A HIGHLY CENTRALIZED SYSTEM OF PUBLIC PROSECUTION HEADED BY A LORD ADVOCATE AND HIS DEPUTY, THE SOLICITOR GENERAL. AT A LOCAL LEVEL, THERE IS A PROCURATOR FISCAL WHO MAKES THE DECISION TO PROSECUTE ALONG WITH THE CROWN COUNSEL. SEVERAL FEATURES OF THE SYSTEM ARE UNIQUE. FOR EXAMPLE, CORROBORATION OF THE ESSENTIAL FACTS OF ANY ALLEGED CRIME IS NECESSARY AND THERE MUST BE EVIDENCE FROM MORE THAN ONE SOURCE TO CONVICT A PERSON WHO CONFESSES. SCOTLAND ALSO HAS A UNIQUE JURY SYSTEM: A CRIMINAL JURY HAS 15 PERSONS SELECTED FROM THE VOTERS' ROLLS AND THERE IS NO PROLONGED BALLOTING OF JURORS AS IN THE UNITED STATES. MOREOVER, THE JURY, PROVIDED IT HAS HAD SUFFICIENT EVIDENCE, IS TREATED AS FINAL ON ALL QUESTIONS OF FACT. JUDGES ARE STRICTLY NONPOLITICAL AND GIVEN HIGH STATUS. THE ARTICLE CONCLUDES THAT THE MACHINERY FOR OPPRESSION AND INJUSTICE IS PRESENT IN SCOTLAND'S JUSTICE SYSTEM, BUT AT PRESENT IT PRODUCES A FAIR MEASURE OF JUSTICE. (MJW)
Index Term(s): Court system; Foreign courts; Scotland
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=62575

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.